I didn't say anything vs I didn't say nothing

Hi teachers,

I was told that “I didn’t say anything” has the same meaning as “I didn’t say nothing”

What do you think?


Jupiter… whoever told you that made a serious mistake. Unless, perhaps you misunderstood…

The two phrases are opposites… not equivalents at all.

“I didn’t say anything” = “I said nothing”

“I didn’t say nothing” = “I said something”

However… you should know that large numbers of English speakers do say ‘I didn’t say nothing’ when they mean ‘I didn’t say anything’. This is not a proper language use.


The proper one is the first.

The other one, “I didn’t say nothing,” and anything similar to it, may be correct (from a cultural standpoint) but generally, it isn’t since it violates the grammar rule of the double negative though it may sound cool to hear in the movies.

Hi Jupiter

Saying “I didn’t say nothing” to mean the same thing as “I didn’t say anything” is not standard English. But it is used by some (not all!) native speakers in informal, spoken English to mean the same thing as “I didn’t say anything.”

As Pond969 mentioned, if you interpret “I didn’t say nothing” strictly, it means (or should mean) “I said something”. But it would be unlikely that that was the intended meaning.